Hampshire: Adams relief at crucial comeback ton

Jimmy Adams. Picture: Neil Marshall
Jimmy Adams. Picture: Neil Marshall
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Jimmy Adams expressed his relief after a stunning return to the Hampshire first team.

The opening batsman, who was left out of the previous two matches in the top tier of the County Championship, struck an unbeaten 104 on day one of the clash with Warwickshire at the Ageas Bowl.

Sean Ervine. Picture: Neil Marshall

Sean Ervine. Picture: Neil Marshall

Recalled in place of James Vince, who is on duty with England Lions, Adams helped steer the hosts to safety from 31 for three.

And he shared a record-breaking fourth wicket stand against the Bears with Sean Ervine, who had smashed 160 not out by stumps.

Hampshire will resume on 294 for three on day two, with Adams a very happy man.

The former skipper said: ‘It was a big relief to get those runs. It had been a while and we were in a bit of strife.

‘To get those runs at a time it was needed means a lot.

‘To have someone like Slug going well at the other end was important as from my end it was hard for most of that innings.

‘I am just delighted to see it through as you have days where you know you are not at your best and you just stick in there and do what the team needs.

‘The new ball offered a bit and then a couple gripped but as the ball got older it got easier and we put overs in their bowlers’ legs.’

After Hampshire had won the toss and chosen to bat, Keith Barker (two for 62) reduced them to 28 for two with the wickets of Michael Carberry and Rilee Rossouw.

Boyd Rankin then dismissed home skipper George Bailey in the next over to leave them rocking on 31 for three.

However Adams, as he has so often done over over the years, steadied the ship.

The 36-year-old struck 11 fours on his way to three figures, while Ervine hammered 15 as the pair shared an unbroken stand of 263 for the fourth wicket – a best for the county against Warwickshire.

The previous record of 222, set by Walter Andrew and Arthur Hill, had stood for 120 years.

Adams, who notched a single half-century in five Championship innings prior to being dropped, is hopeful of kicking on now.

And he reckons leg-spinner Mason Crane may hold the key to Hampshire’s hopes of glory.

Adams added: ‘It has been a while. It is weird because you keep on trucking and you do start to wonder whether that chance will come round again.

‘I heard the PA say about the record and me and Slug had a chuckle.

‘It is a nice milestone, especially when you hear it has been so long.

‘Unfortunately, Slug got most of them!

‘I’m hoping there is something still in the pitch. Hopefully we will be able to get it to reverse and I expect Mason (Crane) to get more out of the pitch than the finger spinners.’